Saw Palmetto for Men: Prostate Health Support
Saw Palmetto is a plant native to North America producing a yellow fruit that turns black when it ripens. The Saw Palmetto fruit, more famously known as Saw Palmetto berries produces an extract rich in fatty acids, plant sterols, and flavonols that helps maintain healthy prostate in men throughout their lifetime.
Saw Palmetto extract is particularly helpful in protecting this walnut-sized gland from Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia or simply, BPH. The prostate gland is located posterior to the bladder and is responsible for producing fluid that goes to the semen. The gland's muscle fibers assist in the process of normal urination.
Saw Palmetto benefits were first noticed during the World War II, mostly to improve stamina, boost libido, and increase sperm production. Its popularity started to diminish in the 1950s and in the 1990s, there was a resurgence of interest in this herb the same time when prostate health problems began to rise. Saw Palmetto supplements shows promising results in the treatment of BPH. Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia is a condition where the prostate gland becomes inflamed and blocks the normal flow of urine. This is why the common symptoms of BPH affect the male urinary system and mostly felt during urination.
Saw Palmetto is thought to work by blocking chemicals that stimulate growth of prostate tissues. It interferes with the action of some male androgens that causes prostate enlargement. Studies in mice revealed that Saw Palmetto extract prevents the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase from causing increased production of Dihydrotestosterone, a male hormone that causes prostate tissue enlargement. Dihydrosterone has more value during fetal growth and development as it responsible for male physical growth these early stages of life. When men become older, DHT becomes of lesser value and should eventually disappear. However, some men produces more DHT at a faster pace and eventually results to prostate enlargement. By blocking the enzymatic actions of 5-alpha-reductase, Saw Palmetto Extract helps reduce DHT production to maintain normal prostate size and functions.
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia affects half of men 50 years old and older. Though not a malignant condition, BPH causes a lot of discomforts. Common signs and symptoms of BPH include painful urination, dribbling of urine, slow flow of urine, recurrence of Urinary Tract Infections, and complete blockage of urethra. In Europe, Saw Palmetto Supplements are prescribed for men to help relieve these symptoms of Enlarged Prostate. Experts believe that Saw Palmetto extract works the same way as prescription 5-alpha reductase inhibitors like Dutasteride (Avodart) and Finasteride (Proscar). These medications help reduce the production of DHT by inhibiting 5-alpha reductase. Synthetic 5-alpha reductase inhibitors produce unwanted side effects like loss of libido, ejaculation problems, and erectile dysfucntions, which are not experienced with Saw Palmetto supplement use.
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